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New Kind of Singing Volcano

There may be a new KIND of volcano around. And we now know that volcanoes "sing," as a kind of warning, when they're about to erupt.

Sara Goudarzi writes in LiveScience.com that volcanoes that have erupted on the ocean floor in the western Pacific could be a new type, never seen before. Most volcanoes erupt when the earth?s tectonic plates move AWAY from each other, but sometimes eruptions occur when the plates move towards each other. These volcanic eruptions weren't caused by either of these things. Instead, they erupted when one plate moved underneath the other. When volcanoes erupt on the ocean floor, there may be a chance that they could produce a tsunami (giant wave), just as an earthquake on the floor of the ocean did recently in Indonesia.

Kurt Kleiner writes in New Scientist that volcanoes make noise that can't be heard by human ears, but when this noise is detected, researchers know the volcano is about to blow. Right now, volcanologists are using computers to detect and interpret the sounds coming from dormant the dormant volcanoes known as Mount Etna in Sicily and Tungurahua in Ecuador. There are volcanoes right here in the US that we should be listening to as well.

Art credit: gimp-savvy.com

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